Presentation to CoRWM Workshop
Implementability of Radioactive Waste Management Options for the UK
Enabling Choices for Nuclear Waste Decision-making
Ian Jackson Shehnaz Jackson 22 June 2005
• This presentation is based on our consultancy report "Discussion Paper on the Implementability of Radioactive Waste Management Options" TS082/2-D, Issue 1, 3rd June 2005, prepared by Jackson Consulting (UK) Limited for CoRWM. • The views and opinions expressed in this presentation are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of CoRWM.
• • • • Thinks ahead towards implementation Aims for a balanced overview of key issues Anticipates likely problem areas Highlights areas of uncertainty
• • • • Intelligent filtering needed Decide what's most important Roadmap for implementation Milestones and decision-points
Implementation - who decides?
• Central government decides policy – e.g. "we will have a repository" – e.g. "we will have a waste store" • Regulators decide safety – e.g. "a repository is safe" – e.g. "a waste store is safe" • Local government decides acceptability – e.g. "a repository can be sited here" – e.g. "a waste store can be sited here"
Implementation - who decides?
Implementability = regulatory licensability + planning acceptability
• Regulators should play a key role in implementation because if the CoRWM solution can't be licensed, then it can't be implemented. • Local government should play a key role in siting because if the CoRWM solution can't receive planning permission, then it can't be sited either. • Decision-making is really a shared activity involving at least 8 separate organisations and institutions.
• • • • • What is blocking progress and why? How can these barriers be unblocked? What can be done to enable progress? How can a solution be implemented? How can a siting programme be de-risked?
• Implementation barriers are mainly institutional, related to local governance and regulatory licensing problems, rather than technology barriers. • For successful implementation CoRWM needs to focus on driving institutional change, factoring-in possible solutions on an implementation roadmap.
Headline issues emerging
• Regulation and licensing mechanisms • • • • • • • Pre-licensing and stepwise licensing Public involvement in technical decision-making Better linkages to the land use planning system Coupling strategic options assessment with siting Local, regional and national disposal solutions Fixing and capping the waste inventory Institutional stability, stewardship and financing
Regulation and licensing
• Existing framework will probably work but may need changes to de-risk a siting programme. • This could range from small tweaks to existing well established law, or a new Nuclear Waste Act for development of a storage or disposal facility. • Small tweaks to RSA93 to give EA/SEPA specific powers to regulate a retrievable store or repository. • Nuclear Waste Act could provide stronger linkage between technical licensing and land-use planning (i.e. between regulatory licensing and facility siting).
Land use planning and siting
• SEA Directive implies facility siting needs to be considered as part of strategic options assessment. • Single stage planning permission and regulatory licence no longer appropriate for waste repository. • Staged facility implementation will probably need: - Series of decision-points - Multi-staged planning consents, linked to - Stepwise regulatory licensing - Nuclear Waste Act to deliver this (e.g. similar to US Nuclear Waste Policy Act).
Public involvement in decision-making
• Public need involvement in framing the questions and the decision, not simply engagement. • Public inquiry regarded as more "real world", than technocratic nuclear regulatory licensing process. • OCNS nuclear security guidance is seen as a major barrier towards an effective public inquiry process. • Nuclear Waste Act could build-in a democratic right of veto for local communities or local government.
Facility siting and implementation
• Cultural shift in emphasis away from centralised disposal strategies towards localised or regionally based disposal strategies and solutions (e.g. Scottish Ministers May 2005 Drigg decision). • People willing to accept local disposal for local waste but strongly oppose disposing of waste brought in from other parts of the country (e.g. Trawsfynydd planning consent restrictions).
• Some common problems and practical experiences of siting radioactive waste management facilities are discussed in the following books: • Managing Conflict in Facility Siting - An International Comparison. Prof S.H Lesbirel (2005). • Nuclear Reactions - The Politics of Opening a Radioactive Waste Disposal Site. C McCutcheon (2002). • Linked Arms - A Rural Community Resists Nuclear Waste. Prof T Peterson (2002).
• Multiple Criteria Analysis in Strategic Siting Problems. Prof O Larichev (2001). • Critical Masses - Citizens, Nuclear Weapons Production and Environmental Destruction in the United States and Russia. Prof J Russell (1999). • Whose Backyard, Whose Risk - Fear and Fairness in Toxic and Nuclear Waste Siting. Gerrard (1995). • Public Reactions to Nuclear Waste - Citizens Views of Repository Siting. Prof R.E Dunlap (1993). • Britain's Nuclear Waste - Safety and Siting. S Openshaw (1989).